Prince Harry faces paying hefty bill if he loses High Court battle for security as ‘public purse hit’


PRINCE Harry faces coughing up a hefty bill if he loses his High Court battle for security to cover the hit to the public purse.

The Duke of Sussex, 37, launched legal action against the Government over the decision to take away his police bodyguards after he stepped back from royal duties two years ago.

Prince Harry is suing the Home Office

Harry, who quit his royal duties and gave up the privileges that come with the job to live in California with Meghan Markle two years ago, said he feels “unsafe” in the UK.

He wants to fund his own Met Police armed bodyguards – but the Home Office refused and insiders are saying police are not “guns for hire”.

It is believed to be the first time a member of the Royal Family has sued Her Majesty’s government.

And if Harry loses high High Court battle, he faces a sizeable bill to cover the taxpayer funds that the Home Office has used to fight the case.

In written submissions, Robert Palmer QC, for the Home Office, said the government department would “seek the costs incurred as a result of this claim in full, including those of the confidentiality exercise, which has resulted in costs being incurred to the public purse considerably in excess of those more typically awarded”.

The Home Office team had two barristers and six lawyers in court.

Harry is arguing his private protection team in the US does not have adequate jurisdiction abroad or access to UK intelligence information which is needed to keep his family safe.

The Duke’s case is being heard by Mr Justice Swift in London’s High Court – but Harry is not attending in person.

Shaheed Fatima QC, for Harry, said: “This claim is about the fact that the claimant does not feel safe when he is in the UK given the security arrangements applied to him in June 2021 and will continue to be applied to him.”

She continued: “It goes without saying that he does want to come back to see family and friends and to continue to support the charities that are so close to his heart.

“Most of all, this is and always will be, his home.”

Mr Justice Swift said he would not deliver a ruling on the application on Friday.

The hearing has heard an application by both sides for some parts of the court documents in the case to be kept private.

It comes just six weeks before Harry wants to come back to Britain for a Service of Thanksgiving for Prince Philip at Westminster Abbey with the Queen.


But he has moaned he is unable to return with Meg, Archie and Lilibet, “because it is too dangerous”.

He gets security when he stays at Frogmore Cottage or attends royal events but has to fend for himself if he wants to see friends and visit his UK charities.

A legal representative for the duke said: “Prince Harry inherited a security risk at birth, for life.

“He remains sixth in line to the throne, served two tours of combat duty in Afghanistan, and in recent years his family has been subjected to well-documented neo-Nazi and extremist threats.

“While his role within the institution has changed, his profile as a member of the royal family has not. Nor has the threat to him and his family.

“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex personally fund a private security team for their family, yet that security cannot replicate the necessary police protection needed whilst in the UK.

“In the absence of such protection, Prince Harry and his family are unable to return to his home.”

The hearing at the High Court continues.

Harry has moaned he is unable to return to the UK with Meg, Archie and Lilibet ‘because it is too dangerous’